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Inside Iowa State, a newspaper for faculty and staff, is published by the Office of University Relations.

April 1, 2005

Veishea returns in 2006

by Annette Hacker

Iowa State's traditional spring Veishea celebration will resume in 2006, President Gregory Geoffroy announced last week.

At a news conference, Geoffroy candidly discussed the factors he weighed in making the decision -- the history and benefits of Veishea, the damage to Iowa State's reputation caused by related celebratory riots, and the recommendations of the Veishea task force and commission. Geoffroy said he seriously considered eliminating the event, but concluded that students should be given another opportunity to make Veishea a success.

"I am just not ready to give up on our students," he said. "I have great faith and confidence in our students, and I want to give them another chance to work with us to make Veishea a positive experience for all.

"We intend to do everything we can to minimize the likelihood of future disturbances. Any member of the university community who participates in illegal activities or abets a riot will face the toughest disciplinary actions and sanctions possible, including expulsion from the university," Geoffroy said.

Next year's Veishea celebration will be the weekend of April 22, 2006.

Changes, plans for the future

Geoffroy announced a number of changes for the Veishea celebration, and said he expects more as planning gets under way. They include:

  • An emphasis on unity. The "One Community" effort, described in the Veishea commission report, emphasizes collaboration and a commitment to education and learning by ISU students, the university, the city of Ames and the Ames community.
  • Increased participation and diversity. The university will work to ensure broader participation by more academic units, student clubs and community groups. University administrators and community leaders will take on a more significant role in planning Veishea, in a close partnership with the students who lead the event.
  • A more controlled environment. Most, if not all, of the Veishea-related activities will be moved off Welch Avenue, which has been a flash point for riot activity and violence.
  • A national summit will be hosted by the Ames/ISU community this fall, which will bring national experts to discuss best practices in preventing and responding to celebratory riots and nuisance parties.
  • Stronger university programming throughout the year, particularly in April, to create more positive entertainment and recreational activities for students.
  • An extensive education campaign so all students understand Iowa law and the student disciplinary code as they relate to riots and public disturbances, and the individual consequences of violating either.
  • Evaluation of the "dry Veishea" alcohol policy. "Many believe that the 'dry Veishea' alcohol policy has had unintended consequences and encouraged large, off-campus parties. We will evaluate that policy and consider conducting Veishea 2006 under the university's normal alcohol policy, which already is very restrictive," Geoffroy said. That policy prohibits alcohol in all public areas of the residence system and allows alcohol consumption only in rooms in which all occupants are 21.


"I am just not ready to give up on our students. I have great faith and confidence in our students, and I want to give them another chance to work with us to make Veishea a positive experience for all."

President Gregory Geoffroy